Gluten Free!!!

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Mama's Fire Gourmet Sauce is gluten free!

I have some truly fantastic news.  We have gone through the process of having our sauces checked out by the research and development scientist at our cannery and he has come back with the incredibly good news that Mama’s Fire Gourmet Sauces are gluten free.  It turns out that this is a big deal as many people are suffering from what is called celiac or wheat allergies.  The symptoms are many, as the Gluten Free Goddess points out there are 300 symptoms, which is why it is so hard to diagnose.  As I began to understand what this news meant, through a great deal of research, I began to realize how many people are suffering.  So the knowledge that we are making sauces that taste good and do not trigger this allergy and its symptoms became quite a big deal.

The Gluten Free Girl, in her articule Symptoms of Celiac and Gluten Sensitivity, blew me away with this statistic:  “1 out of 133 Americans has celiac disease. Officially, only 5% of those have been diagnosed. Of course, there are clearly plenty of folks out there who diagnosed themselves.”  I made Mama’s Fire Tibetan hot sauce and BBQ sauce with the intention of making a healthy and easy to use sauce.  This was confirmation that my intentions have become a reality.

If you are in the Ashland, Oregon area this weekend July 2, 2011 come out and try our sauces.  We are sampling at the Ashland Market of Choice.  We will be there from 12-4pm, then we are heading over to the Ashland Food Cooperative and will sampling Mama’s Fire Gourmet Sauces from 5-7pm.

Share the word, we are gluten free!

Sacred ingredients…Enlightened taste

A Tibetan’s Sampling Tale

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A beautiful Tibetan sunset

Here is a tale worth telling and so tonight I write.  My kung fu sensie has become the man in charge of doing demonstrations samplings in the stores.  This is fantastic as he is fearless in every way.  He shared with me a story which took place as he sampled the sauce this weekend at the oldest Whole Foods in Portland, the Laurelhurst store.  While giving out samples of red chicken, we found out that a Tibetan National worked in the store.  He came up to the table and expressed what Josh reported as irritation and anger towards him and Mama’s Fire.  He opened the conversation by stating that Tibetans do not BBQ.  He went on to state that there was no such thing as a traditional Tibetan BBQ sauce.

The Laurelhurst Store

This made me smile as of course I know it to be true, I have always stated, when this has come up, that traditions have to be started somehow and we at Mama’s Fire Gourmet Sauces have started the tradition of the Tibetan BBQ sauce.  Josh, however took a different approach with this fine gentleman.  One which I must say gives me great faith in his abilities not only as a demonstrator but also as a martial artist.   He simply shared that he knew that it was not a tradition but that we called it traditional Tibetan BBQ sauce as we use the Tibetan hot sauce as a base ingredient and that is how it got its name.

Now an interesting side note, and we don’t know why, the store was not carrying our Tibetan hot sauce.  I have yet to look into this factor but it enriches the tale, because Josh had some on hand.  He offered the Tibetan hot sauce to this man who had grown up in Tibet.  At first he was hesitant Josh reported, he didn’t want to try the sauce.  Josh was great, he did not try to push him in any way, he has often said with his instruction of kung fu that his students must want what he has to offer on their terms not his, and this is how he proceeded with this Whole Foods employee. He let him take the cup and sniff it.  Then Josh shared with joy in his eyes, how a Tibetan national tasted our sauce and fell in love with it in front of him.  Josh stated that he asked for another sample, and then another.  Then said that he wanted to buy a bottle on the spot, so he could put in on his lunch.  Josh finished his tale by letting me know that he ended up giving this man from Tibet a bottle of our sauce.  If he is reading this blog, I do hope he writes in to share his experiences from this last Saturday, as I can only share what I heard second hand.  But what a wonderful account and a fantastic complement.

To close this evenings story, something both wonderful and silly for my many readers to enjoy – some mama love from Mama’s Fire Mama #1

Sacred ingredients…Enlightened taste

My very first samplings at Whole Foods

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Saturday, I had a life experience worth sharing with you all.  I sampled Mama’s Fire Gourmet Sauces at two Whole Foods Markets in Portland, Oregon.  This may not seem like a big deal but for a boy who grew up in Boulder, Colorado, eating health food all my life this was huge.  The sauce that I had been making only a few years ago in a little restaurant called the Off Center Cafe in Salem Oregon was now on the shelf of Whole Foods Market.  I was going to let the health food lovers in Portland taste my sauce.  The true test of the sauce took place last Saturday.  I believe I pasted the test.

Here is the story, I served a variety of samples for each sauce.  For the BBQ sauce I made turkey meatballs and poured the sauce over them and for the vegetarian offering the Boca ground crumble.  The Tibetan Hot sauce offering was also a feast, I made turkey taco meat served with a corn chip and for the vegetarian offering steamed and baked beats.

I must share a side story about the vegetarian offering. It is a fantastic recipe crafted by our executive chef, Happy Max, who is presently working with myself and other chefs to create a Tibetan Hot sauce cookbook.  Max took steamed beats, stirred in Mama’s Fire Tibetan hot sauce and some ginger and then baked them.  I would never have tried cooking beats with the sauce, but truly it was a hit with the Whole Foods clientele and will now be a trademark for Mama’s Fire samplings.

Our first store sampling was at the Hollywood Whole Foods Market.  This picture below shows just about were we were set up to do our samplings.  Being by the meat section seemed like a good place for us to be sure.

Here was were we were in the store.

It was amazing how accepted we felt, I was joined by my kung fu sensie, Josh, who has shown great devotion and belief in the Sacred Works Project.  Each customer who tried our sauce commented on it sharing, a bit surprised at how good it made the food taste.  Many took two samples to confirm that what they had just tasted was true.  I give a great shout out of joy to the Hollywood district as so many of them actually picked up a bottle of my sauce and took it to the register.

Our next stop was the Fremont Whole Foods, I felt a bit like a bull in a china shop at this sampling, I must admit I was a bit wild, my yogi ways came out.  I stole a trash can from behind the desk (we needed one for sample cups) but I should have asked.  I laughed and joked with the customers.  They were great!  It was just extraordinary to watch as they tasted the sauce and joy lite up their faces.  What a gift to make a sauce that does that for others. I got to buy a bottle of my own sauce from the shelf of Whole Foods, another first.    But, the most wonderful thing of all was the children who tried the BBQ sauce.  Over and over again they came back for seconds.  It made me smile and think of my son enjoying his red chicken.

Here was our view from our sampling table at the Fremont Store.  You can see how tight it was and how as a big guy, I might have been bumping into things now and again.

Well, thank you Portland really wonderful to get the opportunity to connect with you all through Mama’s Fire.  We are coming back up to three more Whole Foods this weekend.  The stores we will be at this Saturday, June 11th, are the  Bridgeport Whole Foods in Tigard, OR, from 1-3pm and the Laurelhurst Store in Portland, OR, from 4-7pm.  Them we will be back on Sunday, June 12th, at the Pearl Whole Foods from 11-3pm.

Thank you all and come on out and try the sauce if you are in the area.

Sacred ingredients…Enlightened taste

Why Sacred Works?

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I have to admit I have been shy about this question.  This is my wild yogi side (my father’s influence).  I love the experience of bodhicitta and so I decided like a mad man to make a non profit organization whose mission it would be to support this kind of loving kindness.  For those who might enjoy it, here is my first blog explaining my thoughts, not always well organized I might add, to answer the question why sacred works, Tibetan hot sauce blog #1.

In short, wanted to create a business entity to be able to pay people to do sacred projects.  I figured if people could pay there bills doing something sacred they would do it.  I define sacred as any project or endeavor which brings loving kindness into the world.

Here is our most recent Sacred Works Project to come into being.  All  kinds of donations are welcome and needed to make it happen.  Please feel free to contact me through the Sacred Works Project site if you wish to help.  By the way, buying the sauce becomes a direct donation and you get the sauce.  More of my mad yogi ways.

The project is called the Maitreya Project Relic tour and it is coming to Salem, Oregon August 5,6,7  2011 at the Universalist Unitarian Church on Center street.

I can't wait to be in their presence

Sacred ingredients…Enlightened taste